There are moonbeams weeping on the desert sand, And the dew is softly dripping Where the opal waves are lapping 'gainst the land And the wind is lithely tripping ... Shall we dance -- In the shadows, or in the latticed light, Criss-crossing as the careless moon caresses cloud In the blackened bowl, with the stars' eternity -- To the mellifluous voices of the Night, Which, with the passage of the Time, become more loud, Until lo! we swoon with the sound: end our ditty?
There are we Yogi ... all the Secrets know ... We are inspired ... our souls unloosed away have fled To the lost Spirits of the Air, crying 'panic!' For oh, who shall bear the lantern, to show Us unto the aisle of the long quiescent dead, Or the railed throne of the Kingdom Satanic?
Sweet zephyrs of the dawn, O bring us balm! Let the end be what it will. Now are we automatons in a charm, Sportive in the chase and kill ...
Let us die And let our graves be by the littoral, That we might be soothed by the sea's soft, silky chant. So, in the evening's close, perhaps we shall Ethereally return, and lying on the slant Of a wadi, in trepidation await For the zero-hour's mishandling of our fate, With the moonbeams weeping on the desert sand, And the dew so softly dripping Where the opal waves are lapping 'gainst the land And the wind is lithely tripping.
Editor's note: Three poems by "Almendro" (Denis Saunders) opened the first post-war anthology of the Salamander Oasis Trust - "Return to Oasis" -- subtitled "War Poems & Recollections From The Middle East (1940 - 1946).
- Return to Oasis -- Shepheard-Walwyn Ltd (1980)